Big Bro! Big Sis! What a big title for your child—and a fun one. Though, let’s keep it real, right now they may not think so. Giving up “only child” or “baby” status can be hard for some kids. According to Becky Long, author of Themed Baby Showers, planning a baby shower that spotlights the expectant sibling is one unique way to prevent sibling rivalry before it starts. Sound good, Mama? Here are Long’s eight tips on making sure your big kid feels included and has fun at your baby shower!
1. Ask the expectant sibling to draw a picture for the shower invitations. Copy the artwork onto note cards and frame one for the mom-to-be as a keepsake.
2. Decorate a special seat for the pint-sized guest of honor. Place it next to the mom-to-be.
3. Make a special T-shirt for her to wear to the party that reads “I’m Going to Be a Big Sister.”
4. Order a small cake made especially for him that reads “Congratulations to the New Big Brother!” Top the cake with candles. Let him blow them out and make a wish.
5. Invite each guest to bring a small gift for the sibling or baby gifts that can involve the sibling. For example, give books that the child can “read” to the baby or games they can play together.
6. Choose at least one shower activity that the child will enjoy participating in. Try this gift-opening game: Fill a box with candy and wrap it in several layers of gift wrap. Play a lullaby tape and have the guests, including the child, pass the gift around. Whenever the music stops, the guest holding the box unwraps one layer of gift wrap. Play continues until the winner removes the last layer and shares the candy prize with the guests.
7. Give the child a disposable camera and make her the shower’s official photographer. When the photos are developed, it’ll be fun for Mom to see how the party looked from her perspective.
8. If the child is under the age of 5, keep his involvement brief but lively. Have a basket filled with toys or other treats nearby. Also consider having a babysitter so Mom can mingle even after the little one has tired of the celebration.